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Taft H.S. Basketball Coach Brett Nishibayashi Steps Down After 15 Years

By Alex Nitkin | October 31, 2017 5:54am
 Taft High School boys basketball coach Brett Nishibayashi with the team in 2014
Taft High School boys basketball coach Brett Nishibayashi with the team in 2014
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DNAinfo/ Josh McGhee

CHICAGO — Brett Nishibayashi will end his 15-year run as coach of the Taft High School's boys basketball team, but he'll remain on the school's staff as a physical education teacher, he announced late Sunday.

Nishibayashi, a Taft alumnus known for texting inspirational quotes to each of his players before games, wrote in a Sunday tweet that his coaching tenure had brought him "a great sense of joy, pride and honor."

"Having the opportunity to work with student athletes that walked the same halls that I did has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life," Nishibayashi wrote. "I want them all to know that I gave them everything I had every single day and wouldn't trade a moment of it."

Taft Principal Mark Grishaber, reacting to the announcement Monday, called Nishibayashi "one of those rare coaches that touches hearts."

"He genuinely cares about every athlete that's in his P.E. classes and in the basketball program," Grishaber said.

Nishibayashi decided to make the move so he could spend more time with his family, he said.

"Sometimes you have to give up something you love for someone you love," he wrote.